“From endangered turtle poachers to protectors – more profits”

On Runduma Island in Southeast Sulawesi Province, Indonesia. Indonesia people are helping endangered turtles to survive instead of continuing the age old practice of harvesting and bartering and eating turtle eggs and meat. Sea turtle numbers are increasing thanks to their efforts and the education and support of International Wildlife groups like WWF. Former turtle hunters in the seas off southeast Sulawesi, have become guardians of these endangered sea creatures.

Hatchling sea turtles retuen to the sea

Hatchling sea turtles return to the sea

Endangered turtles have found a safe haven. Four years ago the people of Runduma, population 500, decided to change their way of life and start protecting these endangered turtles. Annually these giants of the sea return to lay their eggs on the surrounding islands.

In the past families took turns every night during the turtle nesting season to collect eggs.  About 30 out of around 100 eggs from each nest were set aside for the village’s petty cash fund. Money from the sale of the community eggs financed public spending for a new water filtration system, and paid for poorer families’ school fees for their children.

The turtles are providing hope for economic prosperity for generations to come. Through re-education, locals are learning turtle ecology and how to make money from the adopt a turtle program, guided tours and protecting the turtles’ nesting sites. Gone is the traditional “egg” income of about 1,000 rupiah (nine cents) per egg. Future generations now may have better ways to make a living, with more education to become stewards of the earth especially  for the endangered sea turtles.

During the peak season from September to December, up to seven turtles will lay their eggs here every night,. Some 243 turtles laid an estimated 3,000 eggs on the island last year, compared to just 20 in 2006 and 77 in 2007, he said. Endangered green and hawksbill turtles are the most common visitors. The WWF estimates that 203,000 breeding green turtle females exist in the wild, and only 8,000 of the more critically endangered hawksbills.

Thanks to everyone for making the world

a little safer for these endangered turtles. – Mother Nature

Becoming a advocate-making changes locally affects

the turtle populations globally


Resources

Excerpts courtesy of TerraDaily.com

Excerpts courtesy of Medindia.net/news/Endangered-Turtles-Safe

Image 1. courtesy of z.about.com/turtles

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1 Comment

  1. Yatno Moyo said,

    June 18, 2009 at 10:03 am

    let us focus on the beauty of the creature turtle

    our focus empoweres

    let us show the turtle in its natural environment

    where the turtle so enjoys

    lets put up huge screens showing the turtles swim and thus celebrating life in their way

    lets combine this lively exhibition with traditional worshipping of the divine

    as in the island of Bali

    let us invite all kinds of fantastic people to create art

    paintings, movies, poems, writings, dances, drawings, storytelling, theater

    all about the turtle

    turtle, mother earth, I love you!

    I adore you!

    And as I set myself free

    (for the benefit of integrity, clearity, true abundance and beauty)

    I set you free

    Together we dance, you four legged creature of ocean, tides and earth

    me, two legged creature of earth and imagination


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